University research programs remain strong, competitive
University of South Carolina research awards totaled nearly $83 million for the first half of fiscal year 2009, an increase of almost 5 percent from the same time last year.
“Without a doubt, this is great news,” said university president Harris Pastides. “The increase shows that our faculty are competitive for the nation’s top grants and that faculty and staff are working tirelessly to keep the university moving forward even in this bleak economic time.”
An increase of 10.2 percent in federal grants and a recent award of more than $2.2 million from the Duke Endowment may help position the university to surpass its record $206 million in grants last year, Pastides said.
“Our faculty are submitting more research proposals that ever before,” he said. “Their productivity and commitment come at a critical time, and their success speaks volumes about the quality of work that they are doing. Research, particularly applied research that drives the development of new companies and products, is key to our future economy.”
Research funding for the university’s health sciences increased by nearly 15 percent overall and by more than 6 percent at the university’s regional campuses.
The Duke Endowment is funding four projects, including colorectal-cancer awareness and screening, a community-focused public-health program, a rural health initiative and a program to support families and communities, said Dr. Rose Booze, the university’s interim vice president of research.
“Even when state and local research awards have declined, our faculty have been able to secure significant awards through federal and private sources to support research that is relevant to the people of South Carolina and ultimately to our nation,” she said.
The University of South Carolina has been designated by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching as a university of “very high research activity.” Only 62 public and 32 private research institutions across the United States have this ranking.